Club Rides – 7th/8th April

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This topic contains 10 replies, has 9 voices, and was last updated by  Russ K 1 year ago.

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  • #520621

    Russ K

    Really enjoyed reading everyone’s write-ups of another wet weekend in Kent…I know the sunshine must be just around the corner!
    I just wanted to say thanks to everyone on the G2 ride for looking out for me on Sunday. That was my first ‘off’ in a while, and quite a spectacular one I reckon! I’m really glad that I didn’t being anyone down with me, and thankful that I managed to bounce rather than break…my left side is a tapestry of beautiful black and blue. Special thanks to Sam and Martin who sorted out my bike’s handlebars and brakes with ease…you guys are pretty handy mechanics! Thanks also to new member Martin who us treated us all to a hot drink at the Teapot. Isn’t it funny, Dave, Graham and I were thinking, that you can feel fitter than your 20s on the inside, but don’t bounce as well on the outside…shame we don’t stay young forever! Russ

  • #520620

    Claire Clarke

    Nick P, Steve B and I did the Fools Errand sportive on Sun, I believe Simon Vaughan also did this (with his ‘other friends’!), but he must have set off before us and been too fast as we never saw him. It was a well organised event and a nice course, which was very well sign-posted. Not the flattest route around, including Vigo Hill (tougher than I remember, and that was near the beginning of the day), Puddleduck Lane leading on to the nasty side of Toys Hill and other drags such as Mussenden Lane and Shacklands. It would have been an even nicer course had the weather been a touch nicer – 120km in Sunday’s rain, it was tough at times to keep up the enthusiasm! The route starts from Hadlow College and at one stage we found ourselves at the top of Shacklands, we managed to resist the temptation to just ride straight home from there and carried on to complete the route, even when Steve B suggested we could just get the train to Tonbridge to retrieve our cars! Thanks so much to Steve and Nick for their company and dragging me round, all good training for the Pyrenees in August.

  • #520617


    G4, “The way we are”. Only 2 riders showed up at GSG, both of whom are neww members.With Ian Soper and Neil from G3 we set off in mizzel, not wet enough to be called Drizzle.A planned route would enable us shelter with hot coffee should the weather worsen.At Horten Kirby Ian and Neil took the Speedgate climb, while we three pushed onto Longfield, where the weather did turn to Drizzle, but we did not falter, climbing Longfield Hill helped to keep us warm and dry on the inside.The flat section through Cobham, and there the Cyclopark emerged through rain spatted glasses. Low and behold Ian and Neil had saved seats for us as every table was heaving with customers. After refreshments the rain had stopped and we enjoyed a mainly dry ride home. REMINDER: don’t move to Longfield, the drizzle starts and finishes just outside its geographical borders. 43 miles at usual pace, good climb up Crockenhill, no wind to speak of. Need ride leader for Sunday 15th and 22 April as I join other members in Majorca.

    • #520619

      Neale Napier

      Cheers to Dave B and Ian for leading. The weather was a bit grim, but I’ve definitely been out in worse, as I’m sure Nick from the Saturday crew can confirm 🙂 .It was nice to get to speak to (albeit briefly) some other riders in G4, so that was a big positive. Still got my cycle fix, so all good. I’m off to Amsterdam next week-end for some epic hill climbing (or is that beer drinking) 🙂

    • #520618

      Chris Dines

      Be good if we could ship some Majorca weather over here…..Oh for a dry, sunny day.

  • #520614

    Bill Fitzgerald

    Hi all.
    I was more surprised by the constant rain, as my phone’s Met Office app showed it as drying up after 9am. How wrong could they be LOL.

    As Chris said, a good sized group formed at the G with the groups splitting 6 & 5.
    All was going well until I picked up a large flint in my rear tyre along Knatts Valley, so I waved the guys on as when I put them on from new it took 20 minutes so didn’t want the group standing round getting cold. Thankfully not so long this time to swap the inner tube out so headed off to try and catch the guys. Note to self, if you’re going to try and catch the group do make sure you have the route loaded. So, off to TeaPot Island for a coffee. With rain still falling and soaked gloves and overshoes i headed home.

    Thankfully made it to PolHill before I got another puncture this time in my front tyre. With heavier rain falling I just pumped it up to get me home. Only a handful of rides on the new GatorSkins, so surprised to have two punctures on one ride.

    Sorry to hear of your spill Russ, I hope the aches and bruises are not too bad mate. Sounds like lots of punctures from others in the group too, so much rubbish being washed onto the roads in this rain. Roll on summer LOL 🙂

    On a sad note, apparently an LVRC rider crashed at CycloPark in a race yesterday and had a heart attack. Sadly he didn’t make it and passed away.
    I’m sure our thoughts are with his family and the poor crew who were faced with trying to look after him track side.

    Some amazing comments about rides from many on STRAVA today, I look forward to hearing more about them.

    Glad to get a 50 miler in the bank today though, haven’t been out much so always nice to see the legs can still push the pedals.

    Stay safe and enjoy your rides everyone.


    • #520616

      Ian Soper

      The forecast of rain turned to be largely correct so when i arrived at the Green at 9:10 there was no-one there! Dave B arrived shortly after followed by 2 more takers for G4 so i planned to join them then Neil turned up for the G3 ride. We agreed it was too wet to go all the way to Grain so we set off for the Gravesend cyclopark with a plan to turn for home if the rain got heavier. .At Horton kirby Neil and i fancied a hill so we left Dave and climbed up to Speedgate agreeing to meet up with G4 at the cyclopark.
      The rain stayed light so we pressed on taking the direct route from Longfield, G4 were braver and went up Longfield hill so arrived after us at the cyclopark.
      Neil and i left G4 to enjoy their lunch and set off on what looked like a dry ride home. All was well until we reached Crockenhill when the rain returned giving us a wet final ride back to Orpington. As I’m really not fit enough to lead G3 thanks to Neil for setting a steady pace, especially on the hills! Hopefully a week in Mallorca will get me fitter!

      Ride distance: 37 miles.
      Average speed: 14.1 mph.
      Total climbing: 1800 ft.

  • #520613

    Chris Dines

    All morning rain forecast (they were right), so an impressively big turnout for the early starting G2 ride. Good of Graham to turn up to lead, given he has a heavy cold. We had Graham, me, Bill, Tony, Russ, Sam, Dave B, Martin D, John K plus new member Martin plus his mate (who will also be joining). Welcome to both!.
    Lumpy route planned for first 40 miles – and it was. A long time since I’ve gone up Knatts Lane (takes you to School House lane, top of Tinker Pot), which is nearly a mile, averaging about 8%. Shoddy roads, wet and muddy – but largely good fun apart from when you a) get a puncture (3 in the team) and b) slide off the road. Poor Russ hit the deck on a very slippy, downhill corner near Hunton. He’s going to be bruised tomorrow – but his bike was still working after some engineering work!
    Good stop at Tea Pot, with six of us having an extended break, making use of the radiators – they are very friendly owners, and were happy to clear up the mud and water left on the floor.
    Great riding all the way back in – and decent pace. Martin and his mate are strong riders, and will fit in really well with the club.
    For me, nearly 80 miles from home and back – 4,500ft of climbs at about 16mph. Thanks Graham for leading in tough conditions and for a good route. Russ – hope you are walking OK tomorrow!

  • #520604

    Dave Barker

    The breakaway group consisted of JulianS, JohnC, SimonP, SimonV and myself. We set out up Cudham with the main group, led by Nick, a few minutes behind to keep the groups size manageable.

    The intrepid 5 enjoyed a nice social ride and each took turns on the front, only stopping for a comfort break and to laugh at how much SimonP had crammed into his jersey pockets. They were practically hanging down to his calf muscles with the weight.

    We were convinced we had successfully held off the peloton, and close enough to Belmondos we could almost smell the ground coffee beans, when disaster struck. Julian dropped off the back with a puncture, and with no team car in site, we set about replacing the torn tube. Sure enough a blur of Avanti blue shot past with lots of happy smiling faces realising the coffee prize was theirs.

    Fortunately the weather was so nice we could all sit outside at Belmondos and enjoy our coffees, what a treat! Especially since JohnC kindly paid for it – thank you. My garmin shows a ride average of 16.9mph, 42 miles, 2600ft climb for those like me who still struggle with metric.

  • #520603

    Neale Napier

    Thanks for the ride Nick et al. Despite the slightly iffy forecast, it turned out nice again. Some even exposed their knees 🙂

  • #520602

    Nick Patow

    Another good turnout for the Saturday ride this morning. No doubt it was a trip up Carter’s that was the attraction.

    Julian S, Dave B, John C, Simon P, Simon V
    Simon and Claire C, Sadie, Paul B, Neale N, Me and new member Ian.
    I’ve a feeling I’ve missed someone ?, if so apologies.

    The route title “40 Miles round to Carters Hill”, rather gave the ending of the blockbuster away (to those who saw it after it was posted late last night).
    However, having arrived in the general area of the aforementioned hill, the reaction suggested not too many were expecting it before it was obvious that was where we were heading.

    We’d set off earlier at a steady pace, and by the time we’d got onto the flatter section between Four Elms and Leigh had warmed up and were rolling along nicely. There was no sign of the first group on the road, but no need to panic there, as it was proving warm enough to know we’d be able to sit outside Belmondos when we finished !

    A steady effort across the group brought us up Carters, before the drop down to Dunton Green and onwards for the scamper up Polhill. After a quick re-group we headed for coffee, and with a blur of speed and power along the Old London Road were past the other group and heading for the pick of the seats for our coffee. To be fair, whilst our speed was impressive I think the fact the other group were stopped for a puncture had something to do with our overtake ?

    All back together at Belmondos, coffee was taken alfresco for the first time in a long time.
    For the record, My ride today came out as 66km @ 26kph with 800m of climbing.

    A really enjoyable morning in the warming conditions of British summer time. Thanks to the Clarke’s who between them did most of the time on the front, and thanks to all for the fine company. It was good to meet Ian for the first time, and hope to see you again soon on your next Avanti ride.
    Thanks to John C for the coffee.

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